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About the Library

Union College offers superb library facilities and is by far the largest theological library in the Province. With its stock of over 63,000 books, 20,000 pamphlets and taking over 55 journals and periodicals, it is an outstanding resource for theological study and research.

 Staff and student Library members also have access to a range of electronic resources such as ATLA databases and hundreds of EBSCO eBooks.


The Gamble Library was established in 1873 by Caroline Gamble in memory of her husband Rev Henry Gamble. It then stocked about 4,000 books. Today, most books are housed within the main library area, but many less–used items are stored in other parts of the College and can be obtained on request.

An interesting historical note is that the Library served as the Chamber of the House of Commons for the Northern Ireland Parliament from 1921 to 1932.

In addition to the books found in most theological libraries (those used both for training for ordination and for the academic study of theology), the Gamble Library has acquired over the years a number of special collections, making it a particularly good resource for research into Presbyterianism in Ireland and related historical matters.

As well as including various resources related to the history of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland and its missionary endeavours, the Gamble Library’s special collections hold rare books dating back to the sixteenth century and the Magee and Assembly’s pamphlet collections.

In order to consult older materials from the special collections please email the Librarian or phone the Library to make an appointment and provide details of your research or area of interest so that relevant resources can be collected together for your pre–arranged visit. Special collections can be consulted in the Library on a reference only basis. Further details are available on request.

For general enquiries, to suggest a new book, to make item renewal or interlibrary loan requests email with details.

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